Lisa’s computer alarm chimed, signifying the end of the day.
“Pause! Save place in the projection.”
She wanted to start the diary again the next day where she left off.
“Professor Hunter,” came a voice outside the Henderson door.
He entered just as Lisa put on her coat, and attempted to fix her hair on the mirror above the sink.
She looked aside with a smile and hugged him tightly.
He laughed. “What was that for?”
“Nothing,” she said, resuming work on her hair.
“My wife was hoping you’d like to come to dinner and meet the family, but I see you have other plans.”
“Yeah, I’m sorry, Professor. I would, but I’ve got to be somewhere for drinks.”
She caught Professor Hunter’s twisted lip in the mirror.
“I haven’t seen you this happy for years. Is there someone special?”
Lisa thought about her coming meeting with Ian. True, she liked him, but thus far, he’d only been a sympathetic ear.
“Maybe,” she said coyly.
Professor Hunter curled his lip again.
“What’s he like?”
She went over Ian’s character. Labourer or not, he displayed intelligence enough to spar with any scholar. His confidence earned him respect, and he seemed stronger than the average man, yet at the same time, he exuded tenderness. In the end, she knew how to answer her mentor.
“He’s just like you, Professor.”
“Oh, is that why you like him?” he quipped.
Lisa kissed his cheek.
“Yeah,” she said curtly, already heading for the door. “I’ve got to go, Professor.”
“Have a good night,” he called after her.
She passed through the Henderson door and ran down the corridor. In less than three minutes, she’d reached the foyer and headed out the entrance for the carpark. Her feet, splashed through a few small puddles on her route to her car. A light spray still descended, laying a film of moisture over her hair and coat. Getting into the car, she drove to the pub where she first met Ian. All the way, she had to keep herself in check from speeding. When she got there, she parked and all but ran inside the door.
A quick scan of the crowded room, revealed Ian’s shock of grey hair and broad back. He sat at the same booth. In order to surprise him, she slid, beaming brightly onto the bench opposite him.
He gaped and shook his head.
“I didn’t think you’d be back. I mean, I’m glad you’re here,” he quickly amended.
Lisa rested her chin on her hands and smiled mischievously.
“Why?” she asked.
Ian thought about it for a minute.
“Because… it doesn’t matter.”
He cast his eyes aside.
It then dawned on Lisa. He doesn’t think he’s attractive.
“Would you like a drink?” He said.
She knew he only attempted to change the subject.
“No; I’ll get you one,” she said excitedly. “Ian, I’ve got so much to tell you.”
He gaped again.
Lisa realised she clutched his hand in both of hers as she spoke.
“Sorry,” she blurted pulling away. “I’ll get the drinks.”
Ian’s gape turned into a knowing smile, telling Lisa she acted overexcited. She didn’t care; she only had good things to say about Brad Morton.”